January 15, 2014 – MS Litigation Review and Commentary – Book Review: Assuming the Risk, by Michael Orey

Book Review: Assuming the Risk, by Michael Orey

By Philip Thomas on Posted in Book Reviews

Assuming the Risk is legal journalist Michael Orey’s 1999 book about “the mavericks, the lawyers, and the whistle-blowers who beat big tobacco.” Unwittingly, the book is a prequel to Kings of Tort and The Fall of the House of Zeus.  The subject of the book is tobacco litigation in Mississippi in the 1980′s and 1990′s.

I think that I knew about this book when it was published, but forgot about it. Amazon’s categories for law books are so bad that finding books on civil litigation is like a treasure hunt. Every once in a while I stumble across one that I forgot about or never knew about.

The first half of the book focuses on Horton v. American Tobacco. Led by Lexington attorney Don Barrett, the case was tried to a hung jury in Holmes County in 1988. The case was a no holds barred bet-the-company dogfight..

About Don Barrett

Mr. Barrett is one of the preeminent trial lawyers in America and has achieved great success for thousands of clients. Mr. Barrett has been the leader of many large pieces of litigation including the Ford/Firestone MDL Litigation and the tobacco litigation that brought about the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement with the tobacco industry.